Sampaoli quits Atletico Mineiro ahead of reported Marseille move

Atletico Mineiro coach Jorge Sampaoli reacts during a match against Corinthians at Neo Quimica Arena, Sao Paulo, Brazil, November 14, 2020. — Reuters pic
Atletico Mineiro coach Jorge Sampaoli reacts during a match against Corinthians at Neo Quimica Arena, Sao Paulo, Brazil, November 14, 2020. — Reuters pic

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SAO PAULO, Feb 23 — Jorge Sampaoli quit Brazilian club Atletico Mineiro Monday in a letter released by his adviser, amid speculation that he is set to become the new Marseille coach.

“I have come to the end. This Thursday will be the last match,” former Argentina coach Sampaoli wrote in the five-paragraph missive bringing an end to his one-year relationship with the team from Belo Horizonte.

“I am left with regret for not having been able to lead (the team) with a full stadium.”

The 60-year-old had coached the team during the coronavirus outbreak, with matches played in empty stadiums.

Press reports have suggested the former Argentina and Chile coach could be appointed by Marseille to replace Andre Villas-Boas, suspended following comments made about the signing of a player he said he had not wanted.

Sampaoli had led Atletico to 25 victories in 44 games played.

The team is third in Brazil’s top flight, six points behind leaders Flamengo with one game remaining. 

Already qualified for the group stage of the Copa Libertadores, they will on Thursday play Palmeiras. — AFP

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